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Plastic Value Chain Director

Location: This position may be located anywhere within the Unities States

Reports to: Chief of Community Strategy

Position: Full time, 40 hours per week, exempt employee


Who we are:

The Recycling Partnership was created with a clear, bold vision: to build a future where the burden of waste has been transformed into a beneficial resource. Through leading partnerships, we create thriving community recycling systems. Since 2015, we have achieved year over year growth and are positioned as the leader within the recycling industry as well as the broader sustainability and circular economy networks.  We empower people to protect the planet by advancing recycling and the circular economy.

Act with Intention and Integrity, Embrace Change and Drive Action, Play Well with Others and Have Fun are just a few of the core values we live by. We have a fast-paced culture of innovation, compassion, integrity and continual learning that doesn’t just exist, but is continuously cultivated so that we always remain employee-focused.


How we work:

We are:

  • Focused on transforming recycling for good across the United States with a focus on mission, action, and measurement of our impact.
  • Actively committed to our Core Values and what they stand for: Act with Intention & Integrity; Embrace Change & Drive Action; Partnership is Part of our Name for a Reason, Play Well With Others; Pursue Growth and Learning; Have Fun; Be your Whole Self and finally, Take Time to Reflect and Dream.
  • Employee-focused. Take a look at this short video about The Recycling Partnership team.
  • Collaborative in our approach to success.
  • Dedicated to excellence in everything we do.



The Recycling Partnership is advancing recycling for all commodities including paper, plastic, metals, cartons, and glass.  As we pursue that multi-material approach to a better US recycling system, there is a need to grow expertise of individual material streams on staff.   This specific position is responsible for bringing forth an understanding of plastic supply chains, and use the growing interest in plastic recycling to improve recycling rates and bale quality for all materials, including plastics. Workstreams will include a regional focus to test, evaluate, and institute solutions that can be replicated and scaled nationally to build strong outcomes for all materials. The Director must understand the recycling system as a whole, have a vision for using the opportunity for one material to lift the system for all recyclables, and understand how  stakeholders work together throughout the supply chain.

This position must have strong interpersonal and project management skills; management experience within the commercial or residential recycling supply chain or materials recovery facilities.  Must-have qualities for this position include solid communication skills, a desire to work with others, and a strong, independent work ethic, which aims to seek, use and create data and best management practices that will equate to increased recycling tonnage and improved quality of recycling. Finally, The Director must have a passion for the mission of the organization to improve the national recycling infrastructure.

This position should have a strong understanding of the plastic recycling supply chain, Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) operations and end markets of recycled plastics. The Director will support the Chief of Community Strategy to engage funders regarding recycling recovery opportunities, project progress, and quantifying impacts. This position will also work closely with The Partnership’s Circular Ventures Team, industry coalitions and collaborators, to create best management practices that grow and improve materials processing and ultimately help the recycling value chain thrive.



Key responsibilities for your role will include: 

  • 60% – MRF Support and End Market Development: A key programmatic goal is to unlock plastic film and flexible materials, but the right candidate will have an understanding of the full plastic recycling supply and MRF operations.  This position will be able to independently build relationships with residential, commercial and industrial recycling stakeholders. This position will use creative financial tools like granting to  build networks that source the appropriate material to meet bale specifications and develop longer range supply strategies that drive significant plastic recovery.  Supporting the sortation and separation of film and flexibile packaging within a MRF will be a priority of this position.  The Director will need to understand the challenges that these materials bring and work with MRF partners to build the business case and operational plans to mitigate those challenges.  The Director will have a strong understanding of the commercial and residential recycling supply chains, ability to identify and build a business case for improvement and investment opportunities in MRF operations, will possess the market understanding to meet material quality specifications, and experience brokering and/or sourcing recyclables.  The Director will work on the Community Engagement Team, who develops and deploys all community and MRF grants and provides technical assistance. This position works closely with team members to develop grant packages to make systemic improvements in recycling programs throughout the U.S. Position will explore, secondary processessing, traditional mechanical recycling as well as chemical recycling end markets.
  • 25% Market Opportunity: Ability to build a list of North American market opportunities for products produced from processing of curbside collected film and flexible plastic waste.  Work with current and potential end markets to understand resin types and resin mixtures that they are able to handle and how that mixture might be adapted to accept not currently recycled flexible packaging is imperative.  Willingness to work with industry to develop new product ideas that are film and flexible tolerant is important.  Develop granting strategy with the grant development team and build funds that will support the market opportunities
  • 15% – Contract Management, Reporting and Measurement: This position will negotiate and enter into contracts with grantees and lead the relationship with the grantee for the length of each contract. Impacts for all grants must be projected, tracked and reported. This position will be responsible for tracking all metrics and reporting results to The Recycling Partnership members as well as industry stakeholders partnering on recycling system improvement efforts. Analytical skills and basic financial modeling of the results will help build the business case for industry investments.



Required Skills:

  • 4-year degree or equivalent work experience.
  • Minimum of 6+ years of experience working for, or with, a MRF or materials processing and marketing material.
  • Experience working with organizations in the plastic value chain
  • Involvment with brokering and/or sourcing post residential, commercial or industrial material
  • Strong project management, communications, presentation, and interpersonal skills.
  • Entrepreneurial
  • Experience with scoping multi-stakeholder projects.
  • Ability to develop investment proposals and achieve alignment
  • Experience with data management (excel, access, online database, etc.)

Desired Expert Skills:

  • Experience working with, or for, MRF equipment manufacturers.
  • Understanding of recycling system and how the stakeholders work together throughout the supply chain, from material generation to end markets. Organization’s material focus is on traditional recyclables including bottles, cans, paper, and containers.
  • Understanding of plastic film and flexibles
  • Business Development experience.
  • Strong research skills and the ability to conduct research as a member of a team or independently.
  • Strong analytical skills and experience with project economics.
  • PowerPoint knowledge to build and create exciting presentations for conferences and workshops.
  • Strong relationship skills with a passion for listening and understanding a processor’s needs and then generating tailored solutions.
  • Grant administration experience.
  • Solid time management and prioritization skills.
  • Ability to work independently and with a team.
  • Intellectual curiosity.
  • Continued professional and personal growth.


Why Should You Apply?

The Recycling Partnership is just that – a partnership. Mission driven, our team is made of a group of individuals with varied backgrounds working together because we are positive changemakers! We all have something unique that we bring to the team – what will be your contribution? Joining our team means you will be encouraged to grow, learn, build friendships and have fun all while transforming recycling for good!

Where do you send your info?

Please email resume and cover letter to jobs@recyclingpartnership.org. Tell us not only how you meet the qualifications listed above, but why you want to be a part of this team and what you want to bring to it.

The Recycling Partnership is an equal opportunity employer and values a diversity in our employees!

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